Disappointment Awareness

Thursday, July 4, 2024

Good Morning Friends,

It’s Thursday, and I am thankful today for powerful awareness about disappointment.

I learned a few years ago about “the 3 D’s that destroy relationships”. These are: Dismissiveness, Disapproval and Disappointment.  Whenever we slip into any of the 3 D’s with God, ourself or others, the relationship will suffer.  This has been a powerful insight which I examine thoroughly in my Powerful Parenting Course.  I’m grateful for the ways this awareness has prevented me from inadvertently hurting those I love, including myself.  It is so important to recognize when we are feeling disappointed within our relationships and do the work necessary to shift into an emotion that will serve everyone better.

Disappointment can be given and it can be received, neither of which serves us.  When we are aware of our thoughts, feelings and actions, we are able to effectively pivot away from the disappointment we are the source of and avoid exuding it outwardly onto others. It can be more tricky to dispel the disappointment directed at us, which we feel and perceive coming at us from others. Because of the way our brains are wired, tribal paranoia kicks in and the disappointment we perceive from others often creates shame and negative behaviors.

I am thankful for awareness of disappointment.  When we perceive disappointment coming at me from others, instead of internalizing it, the awareness of it gives us an opportunity to pause, examine ourself and examine our relationship with the source of the disappointment. If we can take a step back, and not make their disappointment in us mean anything about us, we can determine if we need to make adjustments or if we are showing up in alignment, and in a way we respect. Often what we perceive as another’s disappointment in us is not correct, but a result of our own insecurity, old stories and past trauma.  There are times others are truly disappointed in us, but their disappointment is their business, not ours. Disappointment spewed at us from others speaks volumes about them and very little about us. Ultimately, there is no upside in taking on the disappointment or judgments thrown at us by others.  I challenge you to notice it, decide if an adjustment is necessary or not, then let it roll off like water on a ducks back. The natural result of disappointment is to distance ourselves from the other person and the relationship deteriorates.  We don’t have to let that happen as long as we are aware.

Do you ever perceive disappointment coming at you from God?  Is it even possible for God to be disappointed in you?

Disappointment arises from unmet expectations.  There was an expectation that a standard would be met, and surprise that it wasn’t.  Can God be surprised? God is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent.  I propose that God knows we are gong to fall, fail and mess it all up.  He is not surprised when we do, and therefore is not disappointed in us. God knows we absolutely must fall short of perfection over and over again, and that our growing, progressing, and developing depends on messing up and trying again as many times as it takes.  He isn’t disappointed in us, but cheering us on!  The enemy would love us to feel God is disappointed in us because that destroys our relationship, leading us to distancing ourselves from God. Watch out for thoughts like, “God must be really disappointed in you”; “If you were a good person, you never would have …” “Why can’t you get it right, you just keep letting everyone down.” When we can trust in the grace and unconditional love of our maker, believing God is never disappointed in us, we preserve the relationship and try again.  We are open to the gentle guidance about how to adjust and change but we don’t distance ourselves from God.

I challenge you to recognize when disappointment shows up in your life.  What is it telling you about your expectations?  Is it shining light on an insecurity or story that is ready to be re-written? Are you fully accepting the grace God is freely giving you? Learn the lessons disappointment highlights, then preserve your relationships by refusing to operate from it or internalize it.


Rooting for you always!!